by Suzanne Swan
Learning to de-stress is one of the benefits of attending a regular yoga class. The type of class I recommend to aid fertility is a restorative flow yoga class, a class where the body and mind learn the art of relaxation and pleasure.
An exercise program should reflect its goal. A physically challenging fitness program may be useful for an athlete or for someone overweight, but for someone close to his or her ideal body weight, a strenuous fitness regime may disrupt the fertility cycle. Instead it is better to exercise at a lower intensity for a longer time. A slower physical practice like yoga, which focuses on fluid movements and breath, is more likely to help a person to unwind and result in a deeper sense of contentment and health.
The stress associated with infertility can be lessened through adding the health-enhancing benefits of yoga to modern medical intervention. One of the most powerful effects of stress is that it constricts blood vessels. This constriction may also occur in the reproductive organs, thus interfering with conception. I believe yoga improves fertility by working to increase blood flow and regulate hormonal secretions.
Specific yoga postures work to stimulate the energy to the reproductive organs and increase microcirculation in the reproductive tract. As well as toning the pelvic muscles, yoga postures help bring the glands into balanced functioning improving the health of the circulatory, digestive, reproductive, nervous and glandular systems.
The regular practice of specific yoga postures will restore the proper secretion of hormones, resulting in emotional balance. As you practice different yoga poses, you may find emotions, memories and sensations are released spontaneously. It is well known by doctors that to relieve debilitating inner tensions (i.e. fear and anger), we must learn how to relax, and what better way than a yoga class to bring about a deep state of contentment.
Good yogic habits I recommend to practice are:
- Participating in a regular yoga class or having an established home practice
- Daily mindful deep breathing
- Eating well and taking meals only on the urge of appetite
- Regulating daily routines, go to sleep and awake at the same time each day
At yogababy, our yoga for fertility program is safe to follow during Assisted Reproductive Technology cycles (with the exception of the 48 hours post retrieval and 48 hours post transfer). We have found that low impact physical activity relieves stress and helps to moderate many of the side effects of fertility medications. Learning how to exercise in a “fertility friendly’ way will help to increase your chances for conception.